Mwansa the Great (Zambia: 2011)

Director

Rungano Nyoni

Cast list

Mwansa Bwalya... Shula the Princess
Anna Mithi… Shula
Samuel Mwale... Mwansa
Owas Ray Mwape... Mwansa the Great
Becky Ngoma... Mother
Lackie Phiri... Lackie

Credits

Gabriel Gauchet... co-producer
Rungano Nyoni... executive producer / producer
Andrzej Krol... cinematography
Gabriel Gauchet... film editing
Rungano Nyoni... film editing
Ricardo Hernandez... production design
Ricardo Hernandez... art direction
Ricardo Hernandez... set decoration
Becky Ngoma ... hair stylist
Tobias Tembo... assistant director
Misheck Ng'Uni... assistant art director
Misheck Ng'Uni... assistant art director
Thomas Nyoni Sr.... assistant art director
Lilla Dornhof... boom operator
Tilman Hahn... sound designer / supervising sound editor
Helene Seidl... foley artist
Olaf Simon... foley artist
Marcus Sujata... foley mixer
Leonard Charles Phiri... assistant camera
Becky Ngoma... costume design
Jessie Chisi... production assistant

Synopsis

Mwansa the Great is a coming of age story involving a young boy growing up in the harsh environment of Zambia. Mwansa goes off in search of greatness and to transcend his adolescence into mature adulthood. As a means of coping with the loss of his father, the boy tries to use his imagination to carry on the family legacy. Rungano Nyoni’s intent behind this film is to show death from a child’s perspective, while also exposing the importance of dreaming big in the face of overwhelming obstacles. By embracing his imagination, Mwansa is able to empower himself to overcome his sorrow. At the end of the short film the boy finally reunites with his deceased father within a spiritual connection brought out by his transformed imagination.

Reviews

Mwansa the Great, British Council Film

Fresh Perspectives of Africa, Cork African Film Festival, Mwansa the Great,

Rungano Nyoni, Festival Scope

Bisschoff, Lizelle. “Representing Africa in the UK: Programming the Africa in Motion Film Festival”. Research in African Literatures2 (2013): 142–162. Web…

Mwansa, Dickson M. “Perspectives on Literacy, Gender and Change: A Case for Zambia”. British Journal of Sociology of Education4 (1995): 495–516. Web…

Crehan, Stewart. “Patronage, the State and Ideology in Zambian Theatre”. Journal of Southern African Studies2 (1990): 290–306. Web…